By Bailey Wright
CHESHIRE — The newest section of the Farmington Canal Heritage Trail is expected to be completed this fall.
Public Works and Engineering Director George Noewatne said the target date is Oct. 7, but the state Department of Transportation expects to finish the mile-long section from West Main Street to Cornwall Avenue ahead of schedule.
“I think users of the trail now are looking forward to it,” Parks and Recreation Director Joshua Medeiros said.
The trail already attracts a high number of walkers, joggers and bikers, but Medeiros expects more people to come out when the new section is complete.
“It’ll be a good long stretch of trail,” Noewatne said.
“I think on a weekend it’s going to be difficult for a car to get down West Main Street,” he said, referring to the crosswalk connecting the two sides of the trail.
Along with foliage and a paved walking path, the trail will include a two-stall bathroom facility, a 12-car parking lot, a bike repair station with tools, and a water fountain. There will also be benches and small picnic tables scattered around the area.
Town officials expect local businesses along West Main Street to benefit from increased traffic on the trail.
The new section will also include three butterfly gardens. One of the gardens is dedicated to Michaela Petit, who was killed in the 2007 home invasion.
Several local nonprofits and businesses, predominately the Cheshire West Community Butterfly Gardens organization, have come together to adopt the space. Volunteers will help maintain it in future years.
“It’s great to see a nonprofit organization and a government come together and bring something that will be beneficial in that area,” Noewatne said.
A previous verison of this article stated incorrect information about the trail. There is a section in Plainville to be completed before the Farmington Canal Heritage Trail runs continuously from New Haven to Massachusetts.